Forwarded from: William Knowles <wk@private> http://www.canada.com/search/story.aspx?id=f761bbfe-ea35-4af9-b8e2-614aa550037f David Pugliese The Ottawa Citizen September 21, 2003 With space becoming increasingly important in military operations, the Canadian Forces need the capability to conduct "non-lethal" attacks on foreign satellites, according to a draft plan for the Defence Department's future role in space. "For the Canadian Forces, a limited capability to interfere with an adversary's use of a space system, while maintaining their own capability to use space systems, will be required," according to the strategy paper. Such a tactic would require Canada to develop the ability to jam a nation's links to its satellites. "The Department of National Defence requires the capability for localized, non-lethal negation of adversary space systems," adds the draft version of Space Strategy 2020. The report notes that the only "lethal" method available to the Canadian Forces would be to attack another country's satellite ground stations. The most likely time that tactic would be used is in a coalition operation, it adds. The strategy stays clear of the controversial area of anti-satellite weapons such as those already tested by the United States and Russia. In those cases, fighter jets have used specialized missiles to destroy satellites. Some Pentagon officials have also proposed placing anti-satellite weapons into space. The Canadian government has long had a policy of being against such attempts to weaponize space. The recommendations in Space Strategy 2020 do not violate that policy, since there would be no attempt by the Canadian military to put anti-satellite weapons into orbit. Defence Department officials say the space strategy is still being worked on and has not yet been reviewed by senior officials. A final strategy report is expected to be approved by the end of the year. Satellites have become part of the backbone of modern societies, being vital for many telecommunications transmissions and economic transactions. They are also playing an increasing role in military missions, both in conducting surveillance and in communications. Defence analyst John Clearwater said Canada's allies, such as the U.S., are extremely interested in developing new ways to attack other nations' satellites or jam transmissions from those spacecraft. But he notes that western nations, in particular the U.S., have the most to lose from such a strategy since their economies are heavily reliant on satellites. If they proceed with such a policy, then that would send a signal that U.S. and Canadian satellites can be attacked in retaliation. "You can easily shoot yourself in the foot with that type of policy," said Mr. Clearwater, a specialist in space and nuclear weapons. He noted that even the process of jamming another country's satellite links runs the risk of being seen as an act of war. The strategy document notes that while investment in space capabilities is needed, the Canadian Forces "need not aspire to become a space power." But as military dependence on space increases, the need for assured access to rocket launches for satellites and other sensors will be important, according to the strategy paper. Western nations usually rely on the U.S. or on European countries for such launches. One method around that could be the development of micro-satellites, some the size of a suitcase, which could be put into orbit by smaller Canadian-built rockets. Space Strategy 2020 also recommends better education and training in space matters for military officers. In addition, it notes that Canadian troops need access to a tactical missile warning system. Such a system would alert them to launches of shorter-range battlefield missiles such as Scuds. *==============================================================* "Communications without intelligence is noise; Intelligence without communications is irrelevant." Gen Alfred. M. Gray, USMC ---------------------------------------------------------------- C4I.org - Computer Security, & Intelligence - http://www.c4i.org ================================================================ Help C4I.org with a donation: http://www.c4i.org/contribute.html *==============================================================* - ISN is currently hosted by Attrition.org To unsubscribe email majordomo@private with 'unsubscribe isn' in the BODY of the mail.
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